May 8 marks the beginning of the next round of classes in Crawlspace Theatre Productions’ Improv Training Program. After a sold out class the last round, they’re excited to get a new group of students in on the fun. This program offers four levels of improv classes that help people develop the ability to successfully create improvised theatre. Reasons for taking the class range from an interest in comedy to a desire to develop communication skills. Classes are held at the recently unveiled Crawlspace Theatre Training Center, in Kalamazoo’s Park Trades Center. No previous experience is necessary to sign up for Level 1 classes. Each level of classes meets once a week for six weeks. Each week you’ll spend three hours learning techniques used by improvisers to create theatre on the spot.
Each level of the class builds on the skills learned in the previous. Level 1, Introduction to improv philosophies and techniques, teaches the basics for creating improvised theatre. Level 2, Essentials for scene creation, lets students further explore scene creation. Level 3, Building Improv That Lasts, focuses on investing fully in the work. Level 4, Advanced Scene Work and Longform Creation, provides the tools to creating longform improv theatre.
Here’s what some of the training program students are saying about their experience:
“I learned valuable skills that can be put to use immediately.”
“It was awesome. I’d recommend it to anyone.”
“I’ve enjoyed every class. The atmosphere is fun and supportive for students of all ages [over 15], even those like me with no experience in the performing arts. It always feels active, concrete, and practical. I know I’ll use what I’ve learned here in my professional and personal life.”
“It was a very non-judgmental environment. I recommend it because it was a lot of fun and very useful for everyday life.”
“I really enjoyed being pushed, in a good way, out of my comfort zone.”
“I thought the curriculum was well thought out. At the right level for beginners. Not too difficult or too easy.”
Dann Sytsma, Executive Director of Crawlspace Theatre Productions, has this to say about the program, “Improv is widely celebrated for its unique way of combining play, support, and expression without fear. Participants in the Training Program will gradually learn the techniques that it takes to make great improvised theatre.”
Tara Sytsma, Training Program Director and Level 1 Instructor, brings her 15+ years of improv, theatre, and education experience to the creation of the classes. Tara Sytsma says, “Improv strengthens confidence, reduces the fear of failure, opens social circles, improves mental agility, and gives you new perspective. Plus, it’s the best way to discover if improv is something that you want as a permanent fixture in your life.”
Levels two through four will be taught by Brian Duguay, Bannon Backhus, and Dann Sytsma. Single workshops and intensives will be available to program participants as well. These will be taught by improv veterans, most of which have trained and performed in Chicago, one of the largest improv communities in the world.
Class sizes are limited to 15 participants, and are for individuals age 15 and older. All participants start with Level 1.
“Maybe you want to build your theatrical skills or communication skills. Maybe you want to meet cool people doing something cool. Or maybe you just want to have some fun.” Dann Sytsma says the classes deliver on all of that. “Whether it’s for personal growth or a fun thing to do with friends, all motivations are welcome.”
Tara Sytsma adds, “You don’t have to go to the big city to get great improv instruction. We’ve got it right here in Kalamazoo. It’s a great way to invest in your happiness. However, be warned, improv can change your life.”
Crawlspace Theatre Productions is taking a step to get more people in Southwest Michigan involved in improv comedy. Their Improv Training Program is the only one of its kind in the area, providing four levels of improv instruction. The program welcomes all experience levels. Details about the new Crawlspace Theatre Improv Training Program are available at CrawlspaceTheatre.com.
2016/05/09 - 2016/06/20
Additional time info:
Classes are held in Room 411B of Park Trades Center.